Location: Lulworth Castle, East Lulworth, Dorset
Bestival is Camp Bestival’s older and much bigger brother. It’s big and it’s loud but if you want a large amount of quality entertainment it’s still one of the best festivals in the UK. Add to that its location on the Isle of Wight in a beautiful country park complete with rides and nature walks, and you have a great family holiday, especially if your children are slightly older.
The main problem with Bestival is its timing – unless your school goes back late you might have to take a few days out of the beginning of term which won’t suit most families. However many schools return in the second week of September so it’s worth checking this.
There’s a kids’ field with bouncy castles, puppet shows and circus workshops. There’s also a variety of fun areas with the usual festival silliness that the family will enjoy.
There’s no dedicated family campsite but they do have a quiet campsite (the Blue camping area). There are also a large number of boutique camping options.
It is also possible to stay in a hotel or B&B – the festival provides a shuttle bus service to and from the festival. This is an option that’s not available for many festivals and would make it possible to combine the festival with a few days’ holiday on the Isle of Wight.
6 thoughts on “Bestival”
We went when our eldest was five months old, so about six years ago. We’d met Rob and Josie at Pre-natal classes. We were in the campervan field. I have to say I think Joe had a better time than we did!!! During the day it was lovely and mellow, the Breastival tent was great. Theres a quiet hill with a flock of geese wandering around, real toilets up at the top. Everyone was very friendly, Joe had never had so much attention. Met loads of great people. But at nighttime it went crazy!!! Very loud, Joe refused to wear his headphones and i was a cliche of a paranoid first time mum! Now it would not faze me (we’ve taken kids to glastonbury three times) but back then loads of pilled up teenagers in the dark was a step too far for me!!!
Thanks Donna, that’s very helpful – I’ll add these details to our factsheet to help other families.
It’s a lovely location and there’s plenty to do and see, lots of positives in terms of general atomosphere, but it’s one of the worst for watching music with the kids .Towards the back of the crowd at any of the large stages there is so much crossover between PA systems that it’s impossible to hear just what you are watching. On that basis it’s somewhere we’ll not go back to until the kids are old enough to be down the front! Also, when working out costs don’t forget to factor in the ridiculous cost of the ferry if you need to take a car ( bus transfer is good on foot if not) and the fact that there are a number of attractions on the site that are appealing to kids and have an entrance charge.